Keir Starmer will repudiate the legacy of Jeremy corbyn and accusing the government of being “lost in the woods” in a highly anticipated conference speech that will put the treatment of Britain’s mental health crisis at the center of his speech to voters.
In a sign of the importance of Work The leader raises the issue, Starmer will promise that a Labor government will make mental health treatment available to all who need it within a month, and will create direct mental health centers targeting children and youth.
The pledges will be laid out in his first “in person” speech at his party’s Brighton conference, which he hopes will show that Labor is “back in business” and has a program to address “the chronic issues revealed by Covid. “.
Work believes the growing fuel crisis it is stoking voters’ concerns about competition from Boris Johnson, with the government under attack on several fronts and even the conservative press accusing Downing Street of having lost control. “The shine has faded,” said a party spokesman.
After a divisional-marred conference on changes to party rules and the resignation of leftist Andy McDonald From the shadow cabinet, Starmer’s speech will seek to present Labor as a government on hold.
When asked on Tuesday whether he would prioritize party unity or win the general election, he told the BBC that he would be “winning.”
Although Starmer is not expected mention your predecessor by name, the tenor of the speech will be intended to underline the marked differences between the two men and their policies.
A Labor source said: “The speech will be a demonstration of how the Labor Party has changed. It will be a clear indication that Labor will never again go to elections with a manifesto that is not a serious plan for the government. “
How Boris Johnson appealed to the public on Tuesday do not fill your cars with gasoline unless necessary, Starmer will seek to contrast the government’s chaotic approach with the scale of the challenges facing the country.
He is expected to say: “I see the government lost in the forest with two roads calling out to us. A path leads back to where we came from. No attention is paid to any of the Covid lessons. The divisions and failures that were brutally exposed by the pandemic are getting worse.
“But there is another way in which we approach the chronic issues revealed by Covid with the kindness and togetherness that helped us.”
He will call mental health “one of the urgent needs of our time” and promises that a Labor government will address it on several fronts.
In addition to setting a new NHS goal that guarantees treatment in one month and creating “centers” for young people, Starmer will commit to hiring 8,500 new mental health staff and ensure that every secondary school has a mental health specialist on call. full time.
“We will make sure that children and young people receive early help, putting specialized support in each school and a mental health center in each community,” he will say. “This is prevention in action. Helping young people, ensuring their well-being ”.
Labor estimates the package of measures would cost £ 1 billion a year by the end of the next parliament, allowing one million more people to be treated annually than the government currently plans to help.
It would finance the policies with two already announced tax increases: levying VAT on private school fees and closing loopholes used by private equity investors.
The Labor leader managed to push through a series of radical changes to Labor rules of procedure on Sunday to the furious objections of the party’s leftists.
When McDonald resigned as shadow labor rights minister on Tuesday, claimed that Starmer had repudiated the “10 principles” by which he gained leadership and exacerbated party divisions.
McDonald abruptly resigned Tuesday, saying Starmer’s office was asking him to reject union requests for a minimum wage of £ 15 an hour, which he felt he could not do.
Conference delegates backed a motion calling for the £ 15 minimum wage in Brighton on Tuesday, but Starmer said he disagreed with the policy.
Speaking to ITV News in Brighton, the Labor leader said: “Of course, I will vote according to the policy we put forward on Saturday. We were very clear on Saturday that a minimum wage of £ 10, which is a 12% increase and means £ 2,000 in real money for those who would benefit from that, that is significant, that is our policy. “
The Labor leader denied being pleased with McDonald’s resignation, after speculating that he had been willing to fire him in May’s shakeup.
But some on the leader’s team believe that a confrontation with his party’s left will serve to convince the Labor public that he has changed.
Starmer said she had spoken to her deputy, Angela Rayner, about the strong language she used at a fringe gathering of the party Saturday night. calling the conservative government “scum”.
“Angela Rayner and I have different approaches and different styles,” he told SkyNews. When asked if they also had different opinions, he said: “It is not a language that I would have used. Angela and I talk every day. Of course we have big agreements and disagreements. ”Rayner declined to apologize after his comments.
Starmer will be joined by his wife in the conference room in Brighton, after spending part of their family’s summer vacation crafting a first draft of his speech.
Many colleagues see it as a watershed moment for their leadership, amid concerns about whether the party has managed to gain an audience from the electorate and whether the public knows what Starmer stands for.